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and nancy pelosi leading republicans mitch mcconnell and john boehner. no deal can be reached in past without their cooperation. with the meeting comes a glimmer of hope. in the past all the ifisical cliff talks meetings like this have been the least productive of all. whether he meant to or not the senate majority leader may have spoken for a nation exhausted by seemingly endless fiscal cliff negotiations. >> what's going on here? >> reporter: what indeed. president obama returned to the white house in a grim mood. he met with no congressional leaders and said nothing about his efforts to avert the fiscal cliff, talks continue between senior white house and congressional staff, but that's been true throughout this entire saga. with the deadline looming there were dire predictions. >> come the first of this year americans will have less income than they have today. >> reporter: and recriminations. >> now republicans have bent over backwards. we stepped way, way out of our comfort zone. we wanted an agreement. but we had no takers. >> reporter: the senate's top dem
minutes from now, any moment, they're starting to arrive, we have boehner, pelosi, mcconnell, reid. they're on capitol hill. what can president obama offer that both sides can agree to. >> unfortunately for individual members of the republican house it is to their interest to let tax increases go into effect. that way they won't be viewed as having raised taxes. they can come in and easier to negotiate with them. what the president, what we are hearing about what the president is proposing though, is a small deal to get them through the fiscal cliff so that it avoids some of the implications, some of the more damaging implications for the economy. i don't think the fiscal cliff honestly is really going to have a huge impact. our housing market and labor market remained firm and i think they can survive this. but i do think that though, that if the president does offer this smaller deal i think there's opportunity here, though it is probably slim. heather: that smaller deal, or that plan-c as the president has called it, i guess last friday or we're calling it now plan-c, david, it really
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